Kamala Khan is a superstar now. Introduced only a year ago by Marvel, she’s become a bona fide figurehead for the publisher. A young Muslim girl in America who develops powers and uses them to try and help people, her story has caught on with a mainstream audience and turned the Ms Marvel series into a real, actual hit, especially among the growing digital readership.
What’s fascinating about the character, though, is how clearly she’s embedded into the tradition of superhero comics, and how you can draw a direct line from her back through Marvel’s history, to some of the company's most popular female superheroes. Kamala broke through at just the right moment in time, in just the right way, for the readership to embrace her, but she owes a debt to several characters that came before her.
Yesterday we exclusively unveiled the new Marvel series Star Lord And Kitty Pryde by Sam Humphries and Alti Firmansyah. Today it only seems fair that we add this recent super-couple to our list of comics' greatest couples, in what may be the final round of our poll. This is your chance to vote on Superman and Wonder Woman, Snake Eyes and Scarlett, and more --- and next week we'll tell you how all these couples stack up.
She's a brilliant young mutant who grew up in the superhero game. He's a roguish adventurer from the wrong side of the universe. Together, Kitty Pryde and Star-Lord are one of the most surprising and popular new couples in the Marvel Universe, known to their fans as 'Starkat'. But now, with the coming of Secret Wars, their universe is ending, and that's a big challenge for any relationship.
ComicsAlliance can exclusively reveal that the next stage of the Starkat story will take place in a new Secret Wars 'Battleworld' book called Star-Lord And Kitty Pryde, written by Legendary Star-Lord writer Sam Humphries, and drawn by Marvel newcomer Alti Firmansyah, with the first issue cover by Yasmine Putri. We spoke to Humphries to learn more.
Chris Evans and Chris Pratt have made a bet on the outcome of this weekend's Super Bowl that will see one of them show up at the other's choice of children's hospital or hospice in their Marvel superhero costume brandishing their rival's team colors. Either Captain America will carry the flag of Pratt's Seattle Seahawks, or Star-Lord will don the jersey of Evans's New England Patriots. We couldn't let this titanic tussle between two of Marvel's super-Chrisses pass by without a contest of our own, so we're pitting the worlds of Star-Lord and Captain America head-to-head in a series of polls that we call... the Superpoll.
Round one is shaping up to be a 2-to-1 victory for Evans, with Cap and the Avengers trouncing Star-Lord and the Guardians, but Star-Lord's jam -- Hooked On A Feeling -- is easily besting Cap's jam, the Star-Spangled Banner. Today we look at the parallel forces in our two heroes' lives; the villains they face, the lost eras they belong to, the extraordinary women who put up with them, and the venerable Hollywood legends that inexplicably deign to appear in their movies. Welcome to the Superpoll: Round II.
Everyone loves X-Men: Days of Future Past. It's a box office hit, already raking in more than $500m worldwide. It's a critical hit, earning a 92% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. And it's a popular hit, at least judging anecdotally from reactions on Twitter and Tumblr and that cool new social media platform you don't know about yet because you're old.
I'm the guy who didn't like Days of Future Past. Sorry, everyone. I know it's tempting to dismiss such responses as hipster contrarianism, but I honestly didn't want to be that guy. Life is more fun when you enjoy stuff. So here's why I have to be that guy.
Monica Rambeau is on her fourth superhero codename. In the pages of Mighty Avengers she's Spectrum, having previously gone by Captain Marvel, Photon and Pulsar. The Captain Marvel identity now belongs to Carol Danvers, also on her fourth codename after Ms. Marvel, Binary and Warbird. Her first codename now belongs to Kamala Khan, the fourth Ms. Marvel after Danvers, Sharon Ventura and Karla Sofen.
But Carol is actually the third woman (and seventh character) to call herself Captain Marvel in the Marvel Universe. The second woman was Phyla-Vell, who was the fourth Captain Marvel after she was the second Quasar, before she was the first Martyr, before she saved herself the trouble of another codename by dying. Oh, those women! They never know who they are!
Q: What's your take on Wolverine and his many girl sidekicks? Do you think it's important for their stories, and who's best? -- @manuel_mc89
A: I think it's been well-established over my time here at ComicsAlliance that I have a whole lot of affection for the X-Men, and Wolverine in particular. I love that guy, mostly because it was basically unavoidable that I would end up becoming a fan of a dude who could punch you with knives and rode around on motorcycles and didn't play by the rules, man. I mean, I was ten years old in 1992. That I didn't also enter my teenage years as a huge fan of Cable and Shatterstar (his sword has two blades!) is basically miraculous.
Point being, Wolverine's great, and on the list of things he does that I'm always eager to see, mentoring younger characters is right up there with stabbing hundreds of ninjas. And folks, I like Wolverine stabbing ninjas a lot.
Earlier this year, Marvel announced it was dusting off its Marvel Knights imprint -- which had been dormant since 2010 -- with three new comics under its banner. The initial launch of Marvel Knights was unquestionably one of the most significant moments in the publisher's recent history. The imprint's focus on creator driven stories, largely unencumbered by continuity, saw both critical and commercial success, and its effects are still felt today throughout the industry. You could argue that titles like Hawkeye -- which features a "B List" character operating in stories largely unaffected by the rest of the Marvel Universe -- are direct descendants of the initial Marvel Knights launch, which featured Kevin Smith and Joe Quesada's Daredevil and Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon's Punisher, among others.
Now comes this next wave of Marvel Knights titles, with three miniseries helmed by writers more known for their creator owned work. Each title has an interesting creative team, but the one that stood out most to me is Brahm Revel and Cris Peter on Marvel Knight's X-Men.
X-Men. It's a bland title for a comic. No astonishment here; no bid for universal novelty; no claim to the ubiquitous label "uncanny". The new series, headlined by writerBrian Wood and penciller Olivier Coipel, is
This April Brian Wood and Olivier Coipel launch a new X-Men title with a roster of Jubilee, Kitty Pryde, Psylocke, Rachel Grey, Rogue and Storm. That the team is all-female is unusual for a series that isn't defined along gender-lines. What makes the roster extraordinary is that it's an all-star line-up. These are first draft X-Men, and the book could easily have added more top picks -- Dazzler, Emma Frost, Jean Grey, Magik, Mystique -- and still been all-female.
It's hard to think of any other superhero team with such a strong bench of women, and it's especially hard to think of another team where so many female characters rose to prominence within the team itself. What these characters have in common is no mystery; they were all written by Chris Claremont, the man whose name is synonymous with "strong female characters."
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